Alko Axle Upgrade

Dec 30, 2018
22
0
0
Visit site
Hello
Has anyone any experience of having the caravan axle upgraded to a higher figure?
Our current fitted axle plate says maximum 1350kg. Which after adding various adaptions for my wheelchair bound wife leaves us with a payload of 50kg.
I can put most things in the car, but would like a bit more payload.
I read an old post by someone who mentioned that Lutz had once posted that an upgrade to the axle is possible.
Would a general caravan workshop be able to do this?
Would it entail a new axle or can suspension etc be upgraded.
We are near Burnley.
As this is our early retirement dream, (I am a reasonable fit 60 year old, still run 10k in under 50 minutes) I would prefer to spend the money on our dream, rather than save it for care home fees down the line!
Any advice or suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks.
 
Nov 11, 2009
20,551
6,342
50,935
Visit site
Elwynhorton said:
Hello
Has anyone any experience of having the caravan axle upgraded to a higher figure?
Our current fitted axle plate says maximum 1350kg. Which after adding various adaptions for my wheelchair bound wife leaves us with a payload of 50kg.
I can put most things in the car, but would like a bit more payload.
I read an old post by someone who mentioned that Lutz had once posted that an upgrade to the axle is possible.
Would a general caravan workshop be able to do this?
Would it entail a new axle or can suspension etc be upgraded.
We are near Burnley.
As this is our early retirement dream, (I am a reasonable fit 60 year old, still run 10k in under 50 minutes) I would prefer to spend the money on our dream, rather than save it for care home fees down the line!
Any advice or suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks.

If you read my thread on Relaxed Axle you might get a feel for the difficulty. Alko UK would not supply an upgraded axle without Swift approval. Swift are the design authority fir the caravan and as such work closely with Alko. Swift would not approve the upgrade. I think Lutz gave a link to Alko/de that did say that Alko would upgrade axles. But whether that extends to Alko/uk I suspect not.
Search Lutz’ posts it was quite recent. Within last 2-3 months

It took a Swift main dealer about 2 hours to fit the new axle and they used lots of lifts and supports so as not to risk deforming what is quite a fragile structure. I used them as then the whole job was under one contract and warrantied. Also the main dealer had done some before under warranty and insurance claims.
 
Nov 11, 2009
20,551
6,342
50,935
Visit site
Elwynhorton said:
Thanks for the the information.
What is the rough costs for the whole job including new axle and fitting?

Cost just under £1200 but that was for 1300 kg axle. The new axle comes with everything fitted including brakes etc. Before Alko would even sanction an order the caravan had to be taken to the Swift dealer and the old axle dimensions checked against a drawing supplied by Alko. Even though I had sent Alko the pictures of the old axle serial plate and barcode, together with chassis details too. Swift were unable to confirm those details from their configuration records.
 
Feb 23, 2018
889
66
10,935
Visit site
otherclive said:
Elwynhorton said:
Thanks for the the information.
What is the rough costs for the whole job including new axle and fitting?

Cost just under £1200 but that was for 1300 kg axle. The new axle comes with everything fitted including brakes etc. Before Alko would even sanction an order the caravan had to be taken to the Swift dealer and the old axle dimensions checked against a drawing supplied by Alko. Even though I had sent Alko the pictures of the old axle serial plate and barcode, together with chassis details too. Swift were unable to confirm those details from their configuration records.

After reading the thread on the relaxed axle I decided to have the AL-KO Shock Absorbers fitted as a preventative measure. They seem to make the drive smoother when towing the caravan (not a huge difference), but the main motivation was to help the suspension and lessen shocks on the fabric of the van and the axle. For the red ones (1500kg) i paid just over £100 for them to be fitted by a dealer.
 
Mar 14, 2005
17,758
3,168
50,935
Visit site
Hello Elwynhorton,

There is quite difference between your situation and otherclive's which might mean his solution is not permitted in your case. In clives case his caravan axle suffered a collapse even though he believes he hadn't exceeded the caravans load margin, so the increase in axle capacity was to cater for the standard caravan.

In your instance, you have had the caravan modified which has increased its overall weight beyond the caravan manufacturers expectations, so you are not only looking to increase the axle capacity but to increase your caravans loading margin.

The limiting factor for the weight of a caravan is rarely the axle itself, but more often than not the design of the caravan body. This is probably why Alko would not supply otherclive's, until the caravan manufacturer had approved the unrated axle.

I can't remember if you have posted about your caravan conversion before or not, but there has been a similar thread, and my advise there was it should be the converter doing all this to ensure the work they have carried out will not harm the caravan or make it unusable becasue the weight margin has been used up.
 
Nov 11, 2009
20,551
6,342
50,935
Visit site
ProfJohnL said:
Hello Elwynhorton,

There is quite difference between your situation and otherclive's which might mean his solution is not permitted in your case. In clives case his caravan axle suffered a collapse even though he believes he hadn't exceeded the caravans load margin, so the increase in axle capacity was to cater for the standard caravan.

In your instance, you have had the caravan modified which has increased its overall weight beyond the caravan manufacturers expectations, so you are not only looking to increase the axle capacity but to increase your caravans loading margin.

The limiting factor for the weight of a caravan is rarely the axle itself, but more often than not the design of the caravan body. This is probably why Alko would not supply otherclive's, until the caravan manufacturer had approved the unrated axle.

I can't remember if you have posted about your caravan conversion before or not, but there has been a similar thread, and my advise there was it should be the converter doing all this to ensure the work they have carried out will not harm the caravan or make it unusable becasue the weight margin has been used up.

I should add that when I looked at an upgrade the next weight above mine had identical attachment dimensions, so it would have fitted without any modification to the chassis. However had I been using that higher weight specification axle as the original makers fit then the next higher weight axle would not have fitted without changes to the chassis. So that would have been a No-No anyway.
 
Dec 30, 2018
22
0
0
Visit site
Thank you for your very sensible reply.
You are right in that we have used a large part of the normal payload with the adaptions,
The main weight user has been the installation of a underfloor wheelchair cassette lift, which is 100kg. We should have gone for the ramp option which would have been considerably lighter. My wife was not confident going up and down quite a steep incline.
Luckily the Sedona has a payload of 900kg, and 5 removable rear seats, the rear axle is rated at 1550kg.
So it will be a case of boxing our caravan “things” into the rear of the car and transferring them to the caravan when on site
A compromise that I can live with!
Thanks again for you input.
 

TRENDING THREADS

Latest posts